Applications are now open for grants of up to $10 million to local and regional projects that will help meet the state’s next-generation workforce needs, Gov. Tony Evers announced this week.
The Workforce Innovation Grant Program will help communities develop long-term solutions so businesses can find workers and workers can connect to jobs, Evers says, adding that the money will allow local leaders to address the unique needs of their communities, whether it’s lack of access to affordable child care and transportation or providing the necessary training to help folks switch careers.
The program offers grants from $250,000 up to $10 million to regional economic development partners to design and implement innovative plans to tackle their communities’ most pressing workforce challenges. The money comes from the federal American Recovery Plan Act.
The can be used to meet local workforce needs, such as child care, transportation issues, upskilling and re-skilling workers, or career counseling and coaching services, and may be used to support initiatives like training, planning, marketing, or developing pilot programs that can be applied in other communities. Grant funds cannot be used to replace existing public resources.
Funds are expected to be distributed in two rounds. Applications for Round 1 are due no later than 5 p.m. on Oct. 25, with awards announced in mid-November. Program dates and application details for Round 2 will be announced in 2022.